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Pleasantville setting essay

Good Essays
Describe at least ONE important setting in the text(s).
Explain how the setting helped to show the author / creator’s idea(s), supporting your points with visual and / or oral language features.

The film Pleasantville written, directed and produced by Gary Ross shows a time period in American History where life was more comfortable, stable and ‘perfect’ if you would generalise it. However, as the film ironically shows, this was a time when people were more ignorant, racist and most certainly sexist. Ross demolishes this illusion of the great 1950s American society by showing how its defects are gradually changed from black and white to colour. Ross uses various settings to help show the viewer the imperfect aspects of Pleasantville’s
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Betty is a clear example of costume change. In the beginning Betty wore the typical ladies dress wear,big poodle skirt etc but as betty starts gaining more knowledge and independence she starts dressing more elegantly and feminine .This shows the viewer that as the people of pleasantville gains more knowledge they start to demonstrate the idea of ‘The importance of change’ which is one of the ideas that gary ross shows us through setting.

Music is an important signifier of setting and shows the idea of ‘The importance of change’ clearly throughout the film. When Jen and David first enter Pleasantville the recurring songs and motifs for example ‘Take 5’ by Dave Brubeck which is played at the beginning in the soda shop gives the town of pleasantville a very joyful and ‘pleasant’ atmosphere. This music perfectly matches the naivety of the teenagers as they engage in good,clean fun with their peers. As the idea of ‘The importance of change’ starts to appear in pleasantville,the music becomes more complex and darker to portray the new rebellious mood that has seized Pleasantville. An example of this is when the new code of conduct was issued and one of the rules were ‘In no event shall any music be tolerated that is not of temperate or ‘pleasant’ nature’.In a scene when the ‘coloureds’ were all gathered at the back
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